Born in Barcelona in 1931 but settled in Sabadell from childhood, Alfons Borrell studied in the fifties under Hermen Anglada Camarasa in Mallorca and at the Escola de Belles Arts, Barcelona. In 1960, he was part of the Grup Gallot, a collective created in Sabadell that practised a series of actions halfway between action painting and Surrealist automatism and questioned the limits of authorship and the pictorial medium. In 1971, he participated in the creation of Sala Tres in Sabadell. A close friend of Joan Brossa and of artists like Perejaume, in his long career his pictorial abstraction has been consolidated as an expressive body of great intensity and solidity. Based on symmetries and gestural abstractions, his work has undergone a progressive simplification. With large monochrome surfaces in which colour has a structural prominence, often centred on a single geometric figure, a graphic sign of measurement or drawn boundaries, his lyricism and austerity create a type of painting that is closer to the inner or introspective landscape than to representation.

Since his first solo exhibitions in the late fifties, Borrell’s work has been presented in major art spaces in Spain, France, Germany, the United States and Japan. The art critic Alexandre Cirici invited him to be part of the inaugural exhibition of the first Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona, above the Coliseum Cinema in 1960. In 1978, he took part in the exhibition Seny i rauxa. 11 artistes catalans at the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris. Retrospective exhibitions of his work include those held at the Centre Cultural Tecla Sala, Hospitalet de Llobregat (2006), Museu d’Art de Sabadell (2007) and Fundació Joan Miró, Barcelona (2015).

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My work is my body, my body is my work.
Helena Almeida